BAT (brown adipose tissue) is the main site of thermogenesis in mammals. It is essential to ensure thermoregulation in newborns. It is also found in (some) adult humans. Its capacity to oxidize fatty acids and glucose without ATP production contributes to energy expenditure and glucose homoeostasis. Brown fat activation has thus emerged as an attractive therapeutic target for the treatment of obesity and the metabolic syndrome. In the present review, we integrate the recent advances on the metabolic role of BAT and its relation with other tissues as well as its potential contribution to fighting obesity and the metabolic syndrome.

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